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Firefighters brace as wild winds lash bushfire fronts

Wild winds and balmy weather continue to create dangerous conditions for firefighters battling more than 65 fires across the state.

Warnings in Place as Multiple Uncontained Fires Burn in New South Wales

Firefighters brace as wild winds lash bushfire fronts

Firefighters in New South Wales said they were battling 69 fires burning across the state at 9pm on the evening of November 7, with 28 yet to be contained. New South Wales Rural Fire Service said that with warm and windy conditions expected on November 8, Total Fire Bans would remain in place for the north of the state. Videos here show the Goldens Road Fire in Forster, the fire at Hillville in the Mid-Coast local government area, and the Stockyard Flat Fire in Walcha. Credit: NSW Rural Fire Service via Storyful

Firefighters are bracing for tough conditions as Sydney prepares for a weekend of warm and windy weather.

High temperatures and strong gusts have sparked increased fire danger across the state, where 70 fires are burning across the NSW mid-north coast.

Residents across northern NSW remain on high alert with six fires this morning elevated to watch and act.

Warnings were downgraded overnight, with the immediate risk easing despite hot, strong winds fanning their flames.

Firefighters are bracing for another difficult day as winds across NSW ramp up. Picture Nathan EdwardsSource:News Corp Australia

Four emergency warnings were downgraded on Thursday night to watch and act after residents were told to seek shelter as blazes approached homes in Forster, Stockyard Flat, inland from Port Macquarie, Hillville, near Taree, and Rumba Dump in the Tapin Tops National Park.

Temperatures in Sydney are set to hit 30C on Friday afternoon with sunny conditions pushing through to the weekend where temperatures will reach 24 degrees.

Gusts across the state are proving problematic for firefighters with winds in Sydney set to hit 80km/h in some parts and range from 30-45km/h in others.

Sydney is set for a weekend of balmy weather with temperatures in the high 20’s. Picture John GraingerSource:News Corp Australia

Gabrielle Woodhouse, duty forecaster at the Bureau of Meteorology, said Friday’s winds could fuel the fires raging across northern NSW.

“It’s going to be significantly more windy than what we saw during the day yesterday with a front moving through and westerly winds picking up from the late morning, it will also be quite dusty,” she said.

The windy conditions are set to ease in the evening and through the weekend before picking up again on Monday, sparking further fire warnings.

Sydneysiders are set for another windy day as a cold front sweeps over the state. Picture: Toby ZernaSource:News Corp Australia

Watch and act alerts remain active for Gulf Road in Torrington, north of Inverell, Liberation Trail and Muck Creek in the Clarence Valley, Gum Scrub in Port Macquarie, Stockyard Flat in Walcha and Rumba Dump and Hillville Rd in the Mid-Coast.

The Forster blaze covers more than nine hectares of the Goldens Road area, and is burning out of control to the western side of Silent Grove Road. The NSW Rural Fire Service is warning residents in fire danger areas to monitor the conditions in case the situation changes.

Meanwhile, the Hillville fire is still burning in the Talawahl Nature Reserve, covering more than 1000 hectares in an easterly direction towards the Pacific Highway.

A water bombing helicopter is seen through a smoke haze in Forster, NSW mid-north coast, Thursday, November 7, 2019. (AAP Image/Dan Kirkman, Something Visual)Source:AAP

The fire at Stockyard Flat has burnt across more than 4600ha while the strong north-westerly winds are expected to push the Rumba Dump fire east on Friday.

Seven total fire bans were in place for Thursday with five to continue on Friday.

NSW Rural Fire Inspector Ben Shepherd said multiple fires would combine and continue to head east towards properties on the mid-coast.

“The focus will be from the mid-coast to the border and especially those ones we have got that are uncontained this morning,” he said.

“It looks like it is going to be a problematic day as some of these will combine and continue burning east.”

A water bombing helicopter drops water as bushfires continue to burn at Forster. Picture: AAPSource:AAP

He said the Stockyard Flat, Dingo Creek and Anderson’s fire would combine with others today.

“The fire around the mid-coast have the most potential to create damage today because of their proximity to residential areas,” he said.

He said 370,000 hectares had been burnt this fire season compared to about 270,000 for the entire last season.

The RFS said strong westerly winds were blowing dust across much of the state’s northeast, and the Central Coast and Newcastle areas were likely to endure hazy conditions over the coming days.

“These strong winds are driving up fire dangers. Important today to stay up to date, review your bush fire survival plan and know what you will do if threatened by fire,” the RFS said on Twitter.

Originally published asFirefighters brace as wild winds lash bushfire fronts

Topic: #firefighters
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